2017-06-02 / Entertainment/Lifestyles

Art Comes Alive Through Living Classroom Program

By Juli Schroeger, program coordinator, Rockaway Waterfront Alliance

P.S. 105 students participating in the workshop. P.S. 105 students participating in the workshop. Passersby couldn’t help but notice a masked man dressed in a gas mask and floppy hat working over a large boulder near the Beach 60th Street subway station these past few months. It’s been a strange site but one that has attracted some attention.

The masked man is Kevin Sudeith, an artist in residence working on his petroglyph rock as part of the Art Under the Elevated project being led by Rockaway Waterfront Alliance and funded through the National Endowment for the Arts – Artworks Program and the NYC Dept. of Cultural Affairs-Cultural Development Fund.

Sudeith was selected by a panel of local artists to create a public art piece near the elevated track to bring more focus and attention to the area.

After interviewing various community members, Sudeith has been carving images representative of Rockaway onto a boulder adjacent to the Beach 60th Street train station. The unveiling of his final piece will take place later this summer.

In addition to the carvings, he has been hosting workshops with local schools including students from P.S. 105 as part of the Living Classroom program hosted by Rockaway Waterfront Alliance at the RISE Center during the week.

During the workshop, students learned about the process of making the rock carvings and the importance of telling stories about their neighborhood. They also took part in working with different media to make imprints of the "fossils" that Sudeith created.

First, they used crayons to make etchings of the different images. They then painted the rock with tempera paint to make unique prints of each fossil. Lastly, students made their own paper from pulp and created 3- dimensional castes of the fossil of their choice.

Through this hands-on workshop, students were able to reflect on what Rockaway means to them, and think about their neighborhood through an artistic lens. Students were able to test out several different art forms and walk away with a creation of their own.

Field trips and workshops at the RISE center are now available through the end of June to all Rockaway schools. For more information about these workshops, or to book a trip for your class, contact programs@- rwalliance.org.

Special thanks to Councilman Donovan Richards for his continued support of the Living Classroom Program for Rockaway public schools.

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